H&B seeking pick-me-up

14/1/12- Hastings and Bexhill vs Shooters Hill rugby action. Photo by Steve Hunnisett
14/1/12- Hastings and Bexhill vs Shooters Hill rugby action. Photo by Steve Hunnisett

Hastings & Bexhill need to quickly pick themselves up from an agonising defeat last weekend.

The rugby club will continue its Kent One campaign with a trip to Old Gravesendians tomorrow (Saturday) still smarting from the 20-15 loss at home to Shooters Hill having been 15-0 up with 25 minutes to go.

Head coach Kevin Smith said: “What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. There’s a long way to go and we’ve just got to keep improving. It’s a tough league and every game is a hard game, but that’s what rugby’s all about.”

After conceding the match-defining try in injury time, H&B now find themselves eight points behind fourth-placed Shooters Hill in seventh, albeit with the same points tally as the teams in fifth and sixth.

“Disappointing is the word I think I would use,” continued Smith. “In the first half we were playing some sublime rugby, but in the second half we basically couldn’t deal with the maul and we were giving away penalties as well.

“They played very well in the second half and we made some mistakes, it happens. Does that make us a bad team? Of course it doesn’t. Does that make us want to improve? Of course it does.

“In Kent One every team will find you out, in Sussex One there’s probably only one or two teams that are capable of doing it. Did they deserve to win? A draw probably would’ve been fair. Even their coaches said ‘we robbed you’.”

H&B are set to be without forwards Tom Spatchurst and Rod Luff for the clash with an Old Gravesendians side which they beat 29-19 in October’s reverse fixture. Both teams are on 40 points, but H&B have a game in hand.